Wednesday, August 6, 2014

What Mark are you Leaving on Earth for others to Follow?

"Sea Breeze" 30 x 24 acrylic wrapped canvas
People are so predictable. When the forest fires rage along the highways and hinterlands, we pray for rain. And what do we get? A deluge! Then we pray for the rain to abate, and the interior once again grows ripe for lightening strikes and more fires. The cycle of nature and of our whims is relentless.

In nearby Naples, flooding has contaminated waters and inundated roads, lawns and ditches. Tow trucks are having a heyday pulling vehicles from low lying areas and storm drains. Firemen are busy in the dry season, and auto shops and insurance companies thrive when it’s wet. When the citizens mourn, somebody always makes a good living.

Work-in-Progress #1
 Summer brings red tides and algae blooms both of which are toxic and dangerous. Every season, no matter where you live has its challenges. When summer is gone and the fear of hurricanes disappears, there are frosts to contend with that threaten orange trees and winter crops. We humans must adapt to changing environments and learn how to cope.

All of this is normal, even though, for us, it may be the first time we’ve experienced such drastic ups and downs. 

Work-in-Progress #2

History reminds us that there were similar or worse storms to face by our ancestors. Pioneers in early America fought off wolves and wild animals when they settled. They fought crop damage, hailstorms, fire and flood just as we do. But they pushed on, in spite of the pain. They lost much, but they started over. During their short lives their accomplishments overwhelm us.

Our forebears paved the way for all of us to achieve and aspire. 

Work-in-Progress #4

Famous American artists recorded the emotions and importance of what was happening around them: Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, John Whistler, Grant Wood, Georgia, O’Keeffe, Edward Hopper, Norman Rockwell, Andrew Wyeth, Thomas Hart Benton, and Andy Warhol  to name only a few.

Looking back we may see the whole rather than the nuance or out-of-context parts of the story. History can teach us about ourselves and about the truth of our lives. Facts separate themselves from fiction and provide a clearer picture of what was rather than simply innuendo.
Artist Winslow Homer
Artist Winslow Homer
Artist Edward Hopper
What will your generation’s history tell others about you? Will your achievements offer hope and promise to those who come after? Are you setting a firm foundation that will provide guidance and strength for others to follow? Will the coming America be better than the last century? Are you building bridges to the future or stumbling blocks?

Artist John Singer Sargent